RGDATA has contacted the Low Pay Commission to outline its concerns at
the manner in which this ‘consultation’ on sub minima rates for young people
is being managed.
Normally a consultation exercise is carried out around a set of proposals or an
Issues Paper, which sets out the context and background to the issue. It
outlines facts figures and trends identifying the legal and policy parameters on
the particular issue and in respect of which the information and participation of
external stakeholders is being sought. However, in this case, no such
information is provided.
Instead we are asked to comment generally on “the appropriateness of the
sub-minima rates with regard to their impact on youth unemployment rates
and participation in education”.
Tara Buckley, Director General, RGDATA commented “There is no
information provided on the impact of the rates on youth unemployment rates
or participation in education and consequently we are being asked our opinion
on an unspecific and very general issue”.
She added, “If the Low Pay Commission is to perform its functions effectively
and to seek the views of stakeholders with an interest in the issues under
review, it behoves the Commission to present properly structured and
informed consultation processes, rather than just throw out general themes for
discussion and subjective assessments”.
The issue, which is purportedly at the basis of the consultation exercise is one
of importance to RGDATA members. The retail outlets represented by
RGDATA do provide many young people with part time holiday work, giving
them their first taste of work and often funding students through their studies,
thereby aiding participation in education. There is no indication at present
that the rates of pay for these people is presenting any problems or
challenges, either in respect of this cohort of workers or other workers.
If the Commission believes that there are any such issues, then it is important
that these are outlined and people given a chance to make submission on the
views and finding presented by the Commission.
If the Low Pay Commission provides some research analysis of the sub
minima rates, youth employment/unemployment data and participation in
education, RGDATA will certainly make a submission with our members’
views on the findings.
Direct Line: 01-2887584